ABHC-Balance & Hearing Clinic provides a comprehensive hearing evaluation utilizing calibrated audiometric instrumentation, test booths, and established procedures in order to map your hearing ability to help determine the best solution for your hearing needs.
The use of “background noise” testing is especially important when hearing aids are a likely solution. It may help determine if additional hearing aid features or accessories could be beneficial especially if a central auditory processing difficulty is significantly reducing speech understanding ability. As such, hearing rehabilitation becomes a vital component of hearing aid use as other means of improving speech understanding, such as using visual information, becomes a part of the process.
Middle Ear Functioning Tests
The proper functioning of the eardrum, middle ear bones (ossicles) and the Eustachian tube can be evaluated in order to determine if a dysfunction exists that can be medically, surgically or otherwise corrected. This test can be done on infants, children and adults. A common problem is a poorly functioning middle-ear tube caused by allergies, obstruction of the tube or blockage in and around the opening, genetics, enlarged adenoids, a nerve or muscle defect and other possibilities that may warrant further consultation.
Otoacoustic Emissions (OAE) Testing
This is a test of the Outer Hair Cells (OHC) in the inner ear. The OHCs function as a “pre-amplifier” by intensifying signals that are in the softer range of our hearing. They do not send the signal to the hearing area in the brain but serve to make the Outer Hair Cells vibrate more. OAE tests are commonly used in hospitals and clinics to screen for a potential at-birth hearing problem. Usually, the screening for infants is on a “Pass or Fail” basis and as such does not guarantee a hearing problem cannot arise at a later date.
The TEN-HL test is a test that evaluates the integrity of the Inner Hair Cells (IHC). The IHCs function to pick up vibrations from the OHCs, sending the signal to the hearing processing area in brain.
Tinnitus & Hyperacusis Testing
Tinnitus is a sound that most often is described as “ringing, buzzing, chirping” and is only heard by the individual (subjective tinnitus). On rare occasions, the sound may also be heard by others (objective tinnitus) or picked up by a sensitive microphone placed in the ear canal.
Hyperacusis is the term used to describe an aversion to certain sounds that for other people are either not too loud or annoying. It is basically a reduced tolerance to everyday sounds. It can, to some people, be very detrimental to their overall well-being.
Balance & Dizziness Testing
ABHC-Balance & Hearing Clinic uses a variety of tests to help determine the nature of the complaint, be it balance, dizziness or vertigo. Our equipment can assist us in determining the proper treatment or if more testing is needed by other medical professionals.
A very common cause of dizziness, and one that is easily treated, is that of Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV). Vertigo and dizziness comes about fairly suddenly when looking up, turning around quickly, rolling over or getting out of bed. This condition becomes more apparent the older we get or if there is a history of head injury.
Treatment is done using the Canalith Repositioning or Epley maneuver.
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